Yes, another quick addition to this series, and in fact another one actually written earlier and scheduled to be posted now. More exactly, I had first ended up including these three bands in the previous post, but then didn’t like having six in one post, got rather lost in trying to pick a seventh, left it for the next day and then realized that I only had one “slot” for a personal post after all, so the idea I had, to schedule two personal ones for this week in case I still won’t have suitable Internet access, won’t work without copying at least one more of those old book reviews, which I didn’t want to do just yet. So I guess it’s a bit of a trick, and maybe I should consider this as part two of post 21 in this series instead of the 22nd one, but I’ll just stick with the regular numbering…
I got to two of these additional bands after noticing, as I mentioned at the time, that Aryem was the only band from Mexico that I ever included in such a post. As a result, I searched my list for others from there, dismissed the one that actually had a release last year, and was left with one other and Edenwar, whose vocalist is from there. They’re in a different league compared to Aryem, but don’t exactly seem active as a band anymore, and the project wasn’t even intended to release a full album at first. But they did release one, and A New Silence and Depths of Insanity are readily available, so I’m keeping it simple and having those as my picks.
Which leaves me with the other band I know of that actually is from Mexico, Mutum. As for the picks, from their second, and so far last, full album I’m going for The Memories: Gloria Victis, which may show up as simply Gloria Victis elsewhere, while from their first one, after a quick search and based on what I could find at a better quality, let’s say Wings of Glory. They haven’t released an album since 2013 and I’m quite sure I first heard of them around the time the video for Gloria Victis was posted, in 2014, but I didn’t even need to start to actually listen to it in order to remember it, and I’d say they’re clearly the best band in this post, or at least were at the time that album was recorded. And they do seem to still be somewhat active, and seven years passed between their first two albums as well, so the amount of time since the second one may not be that bad of a sign.
And just as I was looking over that previous post, considering it finished, a few more things were posted by that guy on that group, and I ended up with another new find, Lark Puden. I’m not seeing any activity in quite a few years, and their one album is from 2014, but I’m adding them, and in fact they’re the reason why I ended up with two of these posts, after all. Good female vocals, pretty good sound otherwise, but they seem to insist on messing things up with those bad male vocals. At least they’re not growls, but they really should get rid of those, and I tried to pick songs that are less affected by them, ending up with More Time With You and Between Darkness and Light after spending way too much time trying to decide, I guess since I was in “extra time” anyway. The whole album is on Bandcamp though, so you can listen for yourself to see exactly what I mean.
Yes, two posts in this series less than a week apart, and actually written only two days apart, since I needed something non-personal as the week’s early first post and there’s a personal post to write and schedule after this as well, and at the time of writing I don’t know whether my Internet access will be cut off after January 5 or actually on that day. So the idea would be to have another look over this, remove this part and post it myself shortly after midnight, but if I won’t be able to do so, I have scheduled it to be posted at 5 AM, when I’d normally go to bed. If you’re reading this, it means that’s what happened and I have already lost my Internet access, without finding a replacement that I’d be willing to use on my site, or even on my computer at all.
The necessity of a quick post is also why this just includes the two bands that were the actual new finds from what was posted on that Power of Female Fronted Metal group and a third band that was just a random pick off my list that happened to have released a new album a few months ago. I was just sort of randomly scrolling and pointing with the cursor, meaning to then check whether there was a new release, and this was actually the second band I ended up selecting in that manner, the first one being one I had already included in such a post in the past. Tried about a dozen more times after that, but all those other bands either had no album released in the past year, had already been included in such a post, or weren’t on Metal Archives at all and I didn’t take the time to try to find information elsewhere. Should really get around to changing my script to also include Spirit of Metal, but if I haven’t done it in all these years, I definitely won’t be doing it now.
The first of those new finds is Aryem and the picks are easy to make, since there are two songs in English readily available, Betrayed and Horizon Cries, the latter seeming much better. They say the album should be coming soon, but they have since changed their vocalist, so I’m not sure how relevant any of it still is. But, as I said, I’m in a hurry, so I’m posting this here now, and in fact it seems to be the first band from Mexico that I’m including in such a post…
The second new find is Living Shields. They currently seem to be working on their first actual full album, but the five songs released before are readily available and I’ll go with Painful Fate and Candle Light. The vocals tend to be the weak point, maybe less so on Painful Fate but quite obviously otherwise, and that’s the most important part for me, but I did say I had to post something quickly and this was what I had to work with at the moment. And they do have other things going for them, and Painful Fate shows that something can be done about the vocals as well, to some extent, so maybe they’ll be much closer to their potential on this upcoming full album.
As for the band I rather randomly picked, that’s Rexoria, and I’ll just make things easy for myself and stick to what’s officially posted from their two full albums, so I’ll go with Song By the Angels from the first and Reach for the Heavens in Time from the second as my picks. Strong, confident, professional… In an entirely different league compared to my new finds. Not sure how to feel about the lyrics though, as if you for example take my two picks, I resonate with the issues tackled, but on pretty much all songs I get the sense that Christianity is presented as the solution. I guess it’s not spelled out beyond any deniability, quite clearly not feeling like they’re shoving it down throats, but it nevertheless rubs me the wrong way. Doesn’t change the fact that I like the sound though.
Maybe the 20th post in this series should have been somewhat more special, but instead it’ll just be another rushed one with only three bands. But it seems that such posts, also forced by my need to come up with something non-personal to post, did help last year, as there were a total of five posted, including a total of 19 bands, and only two included what used to be the normal five bands, the other three only including three. Of course, recently the problem was that I stopped checking out that Power of Female Fronted Metal group completely due to finding it overwhelming, considering the amount of stuff that guy keeps posting, so I didn’t have any new finds, yet two days ago I decided to have another look at what had been posted over the last couple of days, ending up with two new names, and then last night I just happened to spot something else that I wanted to post right away.
To start from there, the “something” in question is No Planet B by Coronatus, which became even more interesting when I noticed that their entire new album seems focused on the issue. Now, Coronatus are very far from a new find, probably first stumbled upon them some ten years ago or so, possibly even around the release of their first full album, but after finding them interesting enough at first, I quickly ended up discarding them completely, being left with the thought that I won’t care to listen to them again, likely mostly because of only having a few songs in English. Still, I seem to remember happening to stumble upon a few more songs in recent years and wondering whether I should give them another chance, yet kept deciding against it, just listening to that one song at that time and moving on, not even adding them to the pile of names that mostly get forgotten on my list. But now I’m posting them here, and going all the way back to that first album for the second pick, since I remembered that chorus from Scream of the Butterfly the moment I saw the name again. Had it on repeat for quite a while back then…
The first actual new find is Since Ever, and since what was posted was their video for Following, I’ll go with that as the first pick. And I’ll make it easy for myself and go with the other song they have a proper video for, Alive, as second pick. But they have everything on Bandcamp if you’re interested, and in fact everything from their first, and so far only, full album is on their YouTube channel as well, so just the other two songs from that more recent EP aren’t in both places. There is much in their sound that I’m not fond of, as a matter of personal preference, but then there are the parts that got me interested, and they’re quite good at doing what they’re doing either way.
And the last band I’ll include here is RavenWord, or Ravenword, since they seem to keep switching the spelling. They’ve apparently been around for quite some time, also releasing a demo in 2011, but it was largely a different band back then and their first actual album will be released at the end of the month, so I’ll just go with what was posted, Blue Roses, as first pick. As for second pick, going with the version of Bleeding Moon that was on that demo, though it’s not really something from a different album, since it will also be included on this new one, as in fact all those old songs seem to be, albeit some of them with different names and possibly even different lyrics. Singing in English seems to be a bit of a problem now, while on the demo it was better, and there are other uncertainties as well, but also some interesting parts and sounds.
I’m continuing with the quick posts in this series as I keep trying to avoid needing to use more of those old book reviews to make room for more personal posts, and this one will be a particularly quick one if I’m to also post it before midnight and therefore make it this week’s second post. But at least the choice of bands was easy, since it would appear that what I had mentioned in the previous such post, what I assumed to be the banning of guy spamming the Power of Female Fronted Metal group, cross-posting stuff, was in fact a momentary issue and his posts reappeared after a few days, and that led to me not checking things at all anymore, feeling completely overwhelmed now that I also had older stuff to look at, posted before the date when I had last checked. But I did look one more time, going through just a few of those older ones, and ended up with a new and good band from Hungary, and the last one I had stumbled into before that, before his posts reappeared, was also from there. And I had one more band from there which I hadn’t included yet, and three should be enough for such a post, even if I had another that included three bands from Hungary only last year, though they weren’t the only ones in it then.
To go through them in that order, I’ll start with Tales of Evening, and I’ll say right away that they’re by far the best of the three. They’ve been around for several years, but their first album in English was just released earlier this month, so I couldn’t have really heard of them sooner, though I understand that they did have two songs that were also released in English in their early years, and one of them has a video as well, so I’ll go with that one, Winds Will Rise, as my first pick. The second one is much harder, on the other hand, since I really like what I’m hearing and can’t sit here to listen carefully and try to make a choice I’ll have the best chance to be content with later as well. Still, even though I understand that it’s included as a bonus track on that album, I’ll go with Flower of Frost. I may just end up a little lost in this one, listening to it on repeat for a while…
Moving on to the band I had stumbled into earlier, that’s Leecher and, despite calling themselves “cello metal”, they have a harsher sound on most songs, with some growls, albeit softer ones, on some of them as well. That means it’s possible that it’s not actually the first time I heard of them, but happened to hear one of those songs before and immediately dismissed them, yet those songs seem to be in the minority, so I’ll be including them now. Having their earlier songs on what so far is their only full album does make it difficult for me to stick to that rule of selecting the two songs from different releases if the band in question doesn’t have just one, but I guess I’ll go with Eclipse, which was originally the title song of their first EP, as my first pick. As for the second, I was considering two or three, but in the end I’ll just take the easy way and pick Fading, since they have a proper video for it as well.
As for the third band, that’s Half Past Dark and they only have one album so far, and apparently only two of their own songs from it, Fairy Tale and Saddenly, officially posted. At least that means I don’t need to choose, the picks being obvious, and it’s also not my problem that they can’t be from different releases. On Fairy Tale there are obvious problems with the vocals, on Saddenly the sound’s different in a way that I wouldn’t normally care for too much, and they’re not a band I’d have really considered including in such a post at this time if I’d have selected them individually, but it’s here to at least get to three and, with the other two being from there, not leave out any of those from Hungary which I had heard of so far and hadn’t completely dismissed.
It would appear that this need for non-personal posts does make me add more to this series, and this one actually reduces the number of bands not included in such posts despite only including three, because it would appear that the guy spamming the Power of Female Fronted Metal group, cross-posting stuff, got banned yesterday. I hadn’t checked it in two weeks, increasingly daunted by the prospect of going through all the new stuff, then went through about one week on Friday, leaving the rest for yesterday and today, but when I looked again yesterday I only found a handful of posts left in that period, and very few of them relevant, and then I looked again and found none of his anymore… Which at least means I’ll be checking that group again more, and will relatively rarely actually find new stuff, so if I will somehow keep this up I’ll actually have a chance to eventually go through some of those I had stumbled into in the past again. On the other hand, few actual new finds may mean I won’t add more of these posts after all.
Still, at the moment I do have one new find, out of the posts I went through on Friday, though the band itself is over 20 years old. It seems that Kârma were a cover band for a long time, however, and only their third and most recent album is in English, and also a metal one, so I haven’t checked any older material. In fact, hadn’t checked anything other than Path of Light before starting to write this post, and that one made a good first impression. Unfortunately, now that I’m listening to the rest of their album, which is available on their Bandcamp, I must say that it doesn’t come anywhere near the expectations created by that song. But the other better one that I can find is Sorrowful Dawn, so I’ll go with that as second pick. It seems odd to talk of potential for a band that’s over 20 years old, but with this actually being their only material intended as symphonic metal, and also their only material in English, I guess I can say that there is potential there and it remains to be seen what they’ll do with it.
Though they’re not an actual new find, don’t even have new material released this year and, while I don’t have particular reasons to complain, I can’t say that they stand out in any way either, the name of Kârma’s label reminded me of Alcyona, and since Samhain seems to be their one new song since their first album, I’ll take that as my first pick. Besides, it also happens to be quite fitting, considering the date. And then I’ll make it easy for myself for the second pick, just sticking to what’s easily available, so I’ll go with their first song, The Lost Valley.
As for the third and last band in this post, that’s Cathubodua, and the fact that they just released their first full album does offer a good reason to mention them now, even if I had otherwise known of them for some time as well. The song used to promote said new album is Hero of Ages, so I’ll go with that as first pick, and I guess Scarecrow will be the second, to have something older as well. The older sound is a bit harsh for me, but it was nevertheless good enough to catch my attention at the time, and Hero of Ages is quite obviously better, that harshness being more controlled. Haven’t listened to other songs from the album, however, so I can’t say anything more than that.